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Amendment gives juveniles right to counsel

December 31, 2013

A child charged with a delinquent act will be entitled to be represented by an attorney, according to an order handed down this month by the Indiana Supreme Court. The order creates Rule 25 in the Indiana Rules of Criminal Procedure.

The Dec. 18 order also outlines when counsel must be appointed for a child, such as when there is a request to waive the child to a court having criminal jurisdiction or before placing the child in a community-based correctional facility for children.

Any waiver of the right to counsel must be made in open court, on the record and confirmed in writing in the presence of the child’s attorney and that waiver may be withdrawn at any stage of the proceeding.

The amendment takes effect Jan. 1, 2015.

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